Man found in Great River Ouse in King’s Lynn died of alcohol poisoning, inquest hears

The crest above the entrance to King's Lynn Court in College Lane.
The crest above the entrance to King's Lynn Court in College Lane.

A 40-year-old man from Lynn whose body was found in the River Great Ouse in March died from alcohol poisoning and hypothermia, an inquest has heard.

The hearing at Lynn Magistrates’ Court on Friday was told the body of Miroslaw Bandrowski, a factory worker, was discovered in the river close to Boal Quay in Lynn on March 4, 2017.

A statement from his partner, Anna Mankowska, said Mr Bandrowski had been at work as normal on Friday, March 3 and he had returned just after 5pm.

She said: “He had two cans of beer – it was normal for him to drink after work.

“Some time that same evening he left our address and I assumed he was going to buy some cigarettes as we only had a few left.”

The inquest heard he did not say where he was going and the couple had not had an argument.

Ms Mankowska said he had not taken his phone, wallet or any identification, and after an hour she became worried and went looking for him.

She did not find him, so went home, but he was reported missing the following day when he had still not returned.

The inquest was told emergency services were called to the Boal Quay area on the afternoon of Saturday, March 4 where they retrieved his body from the water.

In a statement, Sgt Darryl Grief said: “There was a small cut to his head but no major trauma to the rest of the body.”

The court was told that Mr Bandrowski had been advised to reduce his alcohol consumption by his GP, after he admitted drinking about 1.5 litres of beer everyday.

A statement from Dr William Smerdon of Southgates Medical Centre said Mr Bandrowski had difficulty breathing through his nose and had been awaiting surgery.

Summing up, senior coroner for Norfolk Jacqueline Lake said a post-mortem had found that the level of alcohol in Mr Bandrowski’s blood was three and a half times over the drink drive limit.

She said there was no evidence of anything suspicious regarding his death, nor any evidence that he had any intention to end his own life.

“On the balance of probabilities, I am satisfied that he left his home, went out and consumed alcohol and fell in to the river,” she added.

Mrs Lake concluded that it was an accidental death. The medical cause of death was given as alcohol poisoning and hypothermia, but Mrs Lake said the possibility of drowning could not be ruled out.